faculty assembling online Encyclopedia of Alabama
In a few years, people all over the world will have a single
source for everything they may ever want to know about Alabama.
That source will be the online Encyclopedia of Alabama, which
faculty at Auburn University are assembling.
in an early stage of development, the Encyclopedia of Alabama
is a major undertaking for scholars in virtually all subjects
that describe Alabama, its history, politics, culture, literature,
natural environment and unique characteristics, says Jeff
Jakeman, the encyclopedia's managing editor.
online encyclopedia is scheduled for launch in 2007 or 2008,
depending on financing and logistics, Jakeman said. A partnership
of the Department of History in Auburn's College of Liberal
Arts and the Alabama Humanities Foundation, the project will
eventually involve dozens of scholars from public and private
agencies, foundations and universities.
editorial staff from AU's Department of History includes Jakeman,
Editor-in-Chief Wayne Flynt and Associate Editor Steve Murray.
They are coordinating technology and content plans with faculty
and staff in several other offices across campus, including
Information Technology, AU Libraries and the Truman Pierce
Institute in the College of Education.
other government and private agencies and foundations are
participating in the project.
Stewart, executive director of the Alabama Humanities Foundation,
is coordinating efforts to raise funds during the developmental
stage and for long-term maintenance.
Alabama Humanities Foundation is very excited to be working
in partnership with Auburn University to develop an online
encyclopedia for the citizens and students of Alabama -- not
to mention people from across the United States and around
the world who are interested in our history and culture,"
at Auburn and other universities are contributing material,
but the encyclopedia is not limited to historical topics,
Jakeman said. "We are looking at literature, popular
culture, sports, entertainment and other areas that help define
Alabama," he said. "This will be an authoritative
reference work that will be very helpful to scholars, government,
businesses and anyone who has an interest in the history and
culture of Alabama."
encyclopedia will be a source of information for everyone,
not just school teachers, students and university professors,
he added. Journalists, business leaders, tourism promoters
and even vacation planners will have the information at their
fingertips, Jakeman said.
will be a very powerful tool for teachers," he added.
"It will serve the academic needs of K-12 and the universities.
Beyond that, it will offer the people of this state the opportunity
to understand and more fully appreciate the rich culture that
we share as Alabamians."
of the Alabama Humanities Foundation added, "The Encyclopedia
of Alabama represents an unprecedented collaborative opportunity
for scholars, citizens, and educational institutions from
across the state to make this resource a reality. The humanities
belong to all Alabamians, and the encyclopedia will tell all
our stories for generations to come."
partners in the project, include the University of Alabama
Press, the Alabama Department of Archives and History, the
Alabama State Department of Economic and Community Affairs,
the Alabama State Council on the Arts, Alabama Public Television,
the Alabama Public Library Service, the Network of Alabama
Academic Libraries and the Alabama State Department of Education.